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Council keen to rid bat problem



THE responsibility for managing flying fox colonies remains in the air as Ipswich City Council pushes for the state and federal governments to take control.

Mayor Paul Pisasale said the community had unrealistic expectations of what the council could do under the complex Queensland and Australian government regulations.

The council hopes to gather support from its fellow councils at the Local Government Association of Queensland conference when it puts forward a motion that the higher levels of government should manage the roosts.

Noise and smell complaints about urban colonies have plagued council.



The growing number of health concerns, including the spread of Hendra and lyssa viruses, has caused serious concerns in communities statewide.

The council will push for the Queensland Government to take responsibility for funding the management of little red and black flying fox roosts on private property if the community is impacted.

It wants the Federal Government to do the same regarding the grey-headed flying fox colonies.

Queensland Environment Minister Steven Miles told the LGAQ in June that the government would not offer funding and both state and federal governments monitored roosts.

He said councils were not compelled to take action against flying foxes.

Meanwhile, Lockyer Valley Mayor Steve Jones is pushing for the State Disaster Management Group to be re-established.

The council will put forward a motion at the Local Government Association of Queensland annual conference on October 19-21.

"Any time in any part of Queensland we can get a disaster no one is expecting," Cr Jones said.



Flying fox complaints on the nose for some
21st Oct 2015 12:00 PM


THE issue of flying fox control reared its ugly head again this week, thanks to the story about Ipswich City Council looking for support in passing responsibility on to state and federal government.

Mayor Paul Pisasale said the community had unrealistic expectations of what the council could do under the complex Queensland and Australian government regulations relating to the management of flying fox colonies.

The growing number of health concerns, including the spread of Hendra and Lyssa viruses, has caused serious concerns in communities statewide.

The council will push for the Queensland Government to take responsibility for funding the management of little red and black flying fox roosts on private property if the community is impacted.

Not everyone appreciated reading about the fact that flying foxes caused problems in the Ipswich region.

The responsibility for managing flying fox colonies remains in the air as Ipswich City Council pushes for the state and...Posted by QT - The Queensland Times on Friday, October 16, 2015

Facebook commenter Rachel Booth suggested that the QT was in fact ignorant for its part in informing the public of Ipswich City Council's plans in relation to bat management: "This is ridiculous!" she wrote.

"The ignorance of the QT for printing this article and of council for continuing to feed people's fears by stating that this singnificant species is an issue is beyond belief. Education is the key, flying foxes play such an important role in our envirmonment and science has proven they have such a minor effect on industries such as the horse industry, if horse owners take some responsibility and have suitable facilities for their animals."

Paul Gleave said he'd become accustomed to having flying foxes near his home and did not believe council's reaction was warranted: "Flying fox colonies everywhere could be having meetings working out which colony is responsible for managing people colonies that keep building more settlements next to their colonies and breeding horses. It's about time people realised we're not the only species on the planet and don't own it. Heaps of bats settle in my backyard every night and they don't bother me in the slightest."

Mr Gleave's sentiments were not shared by all Facebook commentators, with a lot of readers suggesting that bats were a destructive pest.

Russ McCarthy got straight to the point: "Noisy environmental pest. What is the important role they have in our environment ? DESTROY the trees they cling too? Crap all over the washing and cars. What good do they do? Please let me be enlightened."

Christine Murray pointed out that bats were an important part of our biodiversity: "Russ, many of Australia's rainforests, eucalypt forests, and mangrove forests are seeded and pollinated by fruit-bats on a long-range and wide scale. Other animals also provide this but not on such a great scale, as fruit-bats have capabilities of long-range flight - more so than seed-dispersing birds or bees. They carry seed and pollen great distances, and many of Australia's eucalypt flowers are only receptive to pollination at night."

Regardless of whether you like them or loathe them, someone has to take care of them, and it seems as though Council is tired of handling the countless complaints that come in.

Julie-Anne Pashley agreed that it should be a state government responsibility: "It's a statewide issue so the Queensland Government should be taking the lead."


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Megabats and Microbats: Council keen to rid bat problem
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